BIPOC Mental Health Solution Founder Releases Book Exploring Trauma, Mental Health of Minorities and the Need for Inclusive Care

Available today, the book explores a black man’s personal experiences in America and articulates the urgent need to eliminate the barriers making it harder for people of color to get mental health care

WASHINGTON--()--The Joy of the Disinherited, Essays on Trauma, Oppression and Black Mental Health is available today for purchase online and in stores across the U.S. The memoir explores the deeply personal experiences of a black man in America and dissects how current and historical trauma shaped his personal journey with mental health. The book is written by Kevin Dedner, who founded Hurdle, the leading culturally intentional mental healthcare provider, based on his experiences.

The Joy of the Disinherited unpacks Dedner’s trauma growing up in the deep south and lays bare his struggles with mental health. The book also explores generational traumas, common experiences and ingrained beliefs of minorities in the U.S., and the resulting urgent need to knock down barriers to inclusive behavioral health. Current data shows that African Americans are 20% more likely to experience mental health issues, but 50% more likely to prematurely terminate treatment due to the lack of therapeutic alliance or connection with their mental health provider.

“People of color have historically had an inequitable relationship with our country –impacting our community in ways we’re only just now beginning to understand,” says Dedner. “In this book, I try to be unapologetically vulnerable in hopes that my stories connect with and inspire readers to conduct their own self-reflection, and recognize that now is the time to make a change in regards to the mental health of black and brown Americans.”

The book includes a foreword by Rev. Dr. Otis Moss III and a robust reference section that features clinical journal articles and writings that have helped form Dedner’s academic, scientific and philosophical worldview.

“Kevin’s story demystifies the counseling process and normalizes the importance of Black people acknowledging pain and working towards healing and restoration,” says Norma Day-Vines, Ph.D., Associate Dean for Faculty Development at Johns Hopkins University and clinical advisor to Hurdle. “We continue to learn more about the narratives and experiences of black people in this country today, and Kevin’s insights underscore the urgent need for systemic change in our mental health system to better support people of color.”

Dedner continues: “Unfortunately, my story of depression and frustration is not unique. I hope to highlight common threads that bind minorities together in America, revealing the urgent need for culturally intentional therapy.”

Hurdle therapists are trained in an evidenced-based technique, created by Dr. Norma Day-Vines, which improves cultural humility and responsiveness. The trained providers can better understand and connect with minorities, keeping clients more engaged in their mental healthcare for 2-3 times longer than the national average.

The Joy of the Disinherited, Essays on Trauma, Oppression and Black Mental Health can be found on Amazon and everywhere books are sold.

About Kevin Dedner

An award-winning public speaker, Kevin has over 20 years of public health experience. Kevin is a graduate of the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville and has a Master of Public Health from Benedictine University in Illinois.

About Hurdle

Established in 2018, Hurdle is a digital platform revolutionizing mental health care by providing services with a focus on culturally sensitive self-care support for people of color. According to the American Psychiatric Association, Black Americans often receive poorer quality of care and lack access to culturally competent care. Only one in three Black Americans who need mental health care receives it. Hurdle is working to break down the barriers to mental health care for people of color to create an equitable behavioral health service with culturally responsive care and resources. For more information, please visit


Derek Clark on Behalf of Hurdle Health

Release Summary

BIPOC Mental Health Solution Founder Releases Book Exploring Trauma, Mental Health of Minorities and the Need for Inclusive Care


Derek Clark on Behalf of Hurdle Health